It wouldn’t be a Dodger game without an injury now would it? The Dodgers held on to beat the Brewers in a back and forth game 7-5, but may have lost second baseman Mark Ellis again for an unspecified amount of time. M.Ellis strained his right quad while running out a grounder in the fifth inning and had to be removed.
The first game of the home-stand brought some fireworks, with both teams coming out swinging early. Both starting pitchers survived mediocre outings, and were not involved in the decision. Josh Beckett threw 5.1 innings allowing three runs on seven hits and whiffing five. His opponent, rookie Hiram Burgos, went six frames, and allowed three runs on four hits. Mark Ellis’s strained quad brings back terrible memories from last year when a Tyler Greene takeout slide at second base knocked him out for nearly two months. M.Ellis is batting .342 so far this season for the Dodgers while hitting in the number two spot.
The big story is the Dodgers finally starting to hit with runners in scoring position, and their base running was improved as well. Despite the fact the Dodgers committed four errors in the game, they scored seven runs on nine hits, with Crawford and Gonzalez both getting two hits each. Gonzalez drove in three of the seven runs, and Crawford drove in two and homered. Justin Sellers had a good game as well, going 2 for 4. Alex Gonzalez collected three hits, and Ryan Braun, and Yuniesky Betancourt hit home runs for Milwaukee.
Ronald Belisario got the win in relief, making 33 pitches, and Brandon League got the save despite allowing a run, and making a throwing error in the top of the ninth. This was League’s third straight appearance. The lead changed hands three different times, as the Dodgers took an early lead thanks to an RBI single from Ethier, and a solo home run from Crawford. The Brewers would come back with one in the fourth, and two more runs in the fifth on home runs from Braun and Betancourt. The Dodgers would tie it in the bottom of the fifth, with a Gonzalez run scoring double. The Brewers would again retake the lead with an RBI single from Norichika Aoki, and a huge two-base error from Kemp, put the Dodgers behind 4-3.
The Dodgers would score two runs in the seventh, and two runs in the bottom of the eighth, to go up 7-4. Gonzalez plates another pair with a two-run double, and a Crawford RBI single, and Hairston grounder plate the last two runs. The game also saw a botched squeeze from Milwaukee.
Josh Beckett takes the hill for the Dodgers in the top of the first. Norichika Aoki walks to lead off the game. A Jean Segura fly ball to right for the second out. Ryan Braun flies out to right as well. Aoki gets lost in between first and second, and is easily doubled up, and the Dodgers get a double play. Where in the world was Aoki going on that play?
The Dodgers score early, plating a run off of rookie Hiram Burgos in the bottom of the first. Carl Crawford leads off with a deep fly to center, sending Carlos Gomez all the way to the wall to make the catch. Mark Ellis singles, and Adrian Gonzalez’s grounder advances M.Ellis to second. Burgos doesn’t want any of Matt Kemp, walking him on four pitches. Andre Ethier’s line drive single to left scores M.Ellis, and gives the Dodgers a 1-0 lead.
Josh Beckett retires the Brewers in order in the top of the second. Jonathon Lucroy whiffs. Weeks, and Gomez fly out. The Dodgers go do 123 in the bottom of the second. Beckett returns the favor by setting the Brewers down in order again in the top of the third.
Carl Crawford hits a lead-off home run over the center field wall in the bottom of the third. The Dodgers go up 2-0. Ryan Braun’s two-out opposite field solo home run puts the Brewers within one in the top of the fourth. Beckett starts to lose it after Braun’s annoying homer. Lucroy singles, and Weeks walks. Beckett still has a few tricks up his sleeves though, and retires Gomez on a grounder to get out of the inning. Dodgers lead 2-1.
The Brewers take the lead with two runs in the top of the fifth. Yuniesky Betancourt smacks a lead-off home run to tie the game at 2-2. Alex Gonzalez singles. Burgos sacrifices him to second. Aoki’s grounder moves Gonzalez to third with two outs. Jean Segura’s predictable line drive single to right scores Gonzalez to give the Brewers a 3-2 lead. Beckett recovers to whiff Braun to end the frame.
The Dodgers tie it at 3-3 in the bottom of the fifth, but lose Mark Ellis to injury. Again, at this point, we’re obviously cursed. Carl Crawford is hit by a pitch with one out. Mark Ellis comes up lame on a grounder to the box. He’s seen grabbing what looks like his hamstring. Gonzo immediately doubles down the first base line to score Crawford. Dodgers tie it up! However Mark Ellis is taken out of the game, and Nick Punto replaces him at second.
The Dodgers work out of a jam in the top of the sixth. Beckett gives up a single to Lucroy, but whiffs Weeks. Gomez singles Lucroy to second. Mattingly gives Beckett the hook, and brings in Matt Guerrier. For once, Guerrier does his job, getting Betancourt to ground into an inning ending double play.
The Dodgers go down 123 again in the bottom of the sixth. The Brewers retake the lead in the top of the seventh, thanks to some ineffective relief pitching, and a terrible defensive play from Kemp in center. Guerrier begins the frame by giving up a base hit to Alex Gonzalez. Don Mattingly calls in lefty Paco Rodriguez to pitch to pinch-hitter Logan Schafer. The pinch-hitter sacrifices Gonzalez to second. Aoki singles to center, but the ball takes a weird hop, and skips underneath Bison’s glove, rolling all the way to the wall. I’m not sure what happened on this play, but Kemp kind if just stood there. On the play Gonzalez scores, and Aoki goes all the way to third on the two-base error.
The Dodgers make another pitching change, and call in Ronald Belisario. With Jean Segura at the plate, Aoki is caught trying to steal home in what probably was a botched squeeze. A.J. tags out Aoki for the second out. After Beli nearly took Segura’s head off with a high fastball, he whiffs him to end the frame. However the Brewers lead it 4-3.
Burke Bradenhop replaces Burgos in the bottom of the seventh. Burgos pitches six frames, allowing three runs on four hits, walking two and whiffing three.
Sellers leads off the seventh with a base hit to right. Hairston who was double-switched into the game, sacrifices Sellers to second. Milwaukee makes a pitching change and brings in Michael Gonzalez, which makes the third Gonzalez in this game. Crawford flies out to left, and Punto follows with a walk. Gonzo smacks a long double that goes over the head of Carlos Gomez. The Milwaukee center fielder tries to make an over the shoulder catch, but the ball bounces off his glove, allowing both Dodger runners to score, and the Dodgers retake the lead 5-4!
Jerry Hairston’s two errors in the top of the eighth nearly coughs the lead back to the Brewers, but the Dodgers luckily get out of it. Jhair lets a Ryan Braun grounder go right through his legs for error number one. Lucroy lines out, and Weeks whiffs. Gomez reaches on the second error of the frame by Hairston. Thank god Belisario whiffs Betancourt to end the inning, and preserve the Dodger 5-4 lead.
The Dodgers tack on much needed insurance runs in the bottom of the eighth. With Brandon Kintzler on the mound, consecutive hits from Luis Cruz, and Sellers puts runners at second and third. Cruz a single, and Sellers a double down the third base line. Hairston’s slow roller to third plates the Dodger’s sixth run, making the score 6-4 Dodgers. Crawford singles off of Gonzalez’s glove into left to score Sellers, and the Dodgers extend their lead to 7-4.
Brandon League on to close out the game with the Dodgers leading 7-4. Gonzalez leads off with a hit, and the Dodgers are in trouble. Pinch-hitter Blake Lolli whiffs for the first out. Aoki grounds out to third, Gonzalez moving over to third with two outs. Segura knocks down Lee with a line drive back to the box. The liner hits League in the foot, and he loses the ball while falling over. He tries to make a rushed throw, and throws the ball away for the Dodgers fourth error of the night. Aoki scores to make it a 7-5 game. That brought up you know who, yes Ryan Braun. Fortunately, League gets him to ground out to first, and the Dodgers win!
Great game for the Dodgers despite the four errors, and sloppy play. The offense came through tonight with flying colors. The Dodgers were 4 for 9 with runners in scoring position.
Please pray for Mark Ellis’s health. We can’t afford to lose him again. Again Mark Ellis a strained right quad muscle. As soon as we have anymore updates on M.Ellis we will pass them along to you. The veteran second baseman will undergo an MRI tomorrow, and we’ll know more then. Hanley Ramirez can’t get back soon enough.
The Dodgers trudge on. The Boys in Blue are able to overcome another mediocre start from Josh Beckett, four errors, and now must also survive another injury. Despite all of that, the Dodgers found a way to win. The Dodgers will have to continue to play through adversity.
With the win, the Dodgers improve to 11-11, climbing back to .500. They remain 3.5 games behind first place Colorado. Join us tomorrow night at 6:10 PM for more exciting Dodger Baseball. Stephen Fife will make his second start of the season as the Dodgers go for the series win. The Brewers will counter with Wily Peralta.
The Dodgers have now won three of their last four. Are things finally starting to turn around for the Dodgers? I hope so. Happy Friday everyone! Go Blue.